Postgame Notes & Quotes: LA @ SEA

Galaxy defeat Sounders 1-0 in MLS First Kick

DL Donovan vs SEA

Photo Credit: 
Robert Mora / LA Galaxy

Postgame Quotes

Bruce Arena - Galaxy Head Coach

(On the game...) "When it was 1-0, the objective wasn't to get another goal as much as it was to keep the score 1-0. That's what we had to do. The conditions weren't easy and we were against a team playing in front of a crowd that's supportive. Our backs had to be against the wall the last 10 or 15 minutes. You have to be experienced to get out of her with a win and that's what we did."

(On the Sounders FC...) "They have a very similar team to what they had last year, I think. They're looking for that right combination up top, but the back line is solid. They're a good team that will fight all the way through the season and try to make the playoffs. There's not a big difference between the quality of teams in this league."

Josh Saunders - Galaxy Goalkeeper

(On starting...) "One of those games where a lot of the things came to me and it was a lot of preparation leading up to this from the preseason. You're always prepared. You have to be prepared to do your job."

David Beckham - Galaxy Midfielder

(On the win...) "It's what we're looking for. We were away from home and up against a team with great support. We'll take the three points. I thought we deserved it. It was a good night."

(On playing with a lead...) "Intelligence comes when we're 1-0 up. We have the ball and we work hard for each other and we've worked hard leading up to the game. We have to play well and work hard and we did that tonight."

(On Sounders...) "They're a good team with great support. Every time I've played here, the support has been incredible. They're always fun to play in front of. I always enjoy it and it's even better when we win."

Landon Donovan - Galaxy Midfielder

(On winning with key players missing...) "There's not another team in our league that could go without two starting center backs, their starting goalie, and one of their forwards and win here. We're proud of that, but it's just the beginning and it's early."

(On beating Sounders FC....) "People don't realize how difficult it is to beat a playoff caliber team in this league five times in a row, three times on their field. And those three are on what everyone would say is the best home field advantage e in our league. We relish this. If they want to open the upper deck, we would love it. We love playing here and we relish it."

Sigi Schmid - Sounders FC Head Coach

(On tonight's overall performance by both teams...) "I thought we forced some good situations, forced some saves. We were around it. The Galaxy, I thought, were dangerous all night on the counter attack. That's the way they were playing. [David] Beckham and [Landon] Donovan were cheating a little bit defensively and had opportunities to counter.  We played a little bit too much on the right side in the first half. We tried to spread the game more and get Steve Zakuani involved more in the second half, which I think we did and I thought we created some decent stuff from that. A tie, I think, would have been a fair result. But it is what it is. I was proud of the effort. I thought the effort was good.  I thought the soccer, at times, was good. We still could get better, but that's a coach talking."

(On Galaxy goalkeeper Josh Saunders' performance...) "He played well tonight. One of them we hit him with it, but he did alright. He came up when he needed to come up. He made some saves. [...] But there's the other chances that we just put wide as well, that we needed to put in. [Erik] Friberg's chance, where he was very unlucky, and O'Brian White's chance in the second half were very good chances."

(On O'Brian White's performance...) "I thought O'Brian did well. I think his play with his back to the goal is something that we're working with him on. It can still get better but I thought he was active, he was busy. He stayed high with their back line and as a result of that I think he had two or three good chances. The one he just missed - a lot of times he just bends those balls into the corner. The one in the second half, he put wide.  Another one in the first half he should have probably hit the first time but you know if you're a forward and you can get three or four good chances a game that's a good thing."

(On Erik Friberg's performance...) "I thought Erik was good.  I thought he ran out of gas and we had to make subs in some different areas but I thought for the first 60 minutes he was very good."

On losing three in a row to the LA Galaxy:

"Obviously for us that's disappointing right now.  Sometimes you just have a boogey team, you know, a team that just, for some reason, it just doesn't work for you.  And right now, they're that team for us.  I think they know that in their locker room.  In the past couple of games when we've played them, I think they've dominated us a lot more.  I didn't think that was the case today."

(On the road game at New York...) "We've been a good road team in the past. It's a matter of us going out there and doing the same. We have the most difficult opening two games of anybody in the league for sure. The Galaxy gets an extra day of rest for them to play, and they're playing at home. It is what it is. We have to accept it and we have to move on. We're not afraid of New York and we just have to make sure we're ready to go, physically."

(On the rematch between Seattle and Los Angeles later in the season...) "There's a lot of games between now and July 4 so we have got to focus on those other games. Our guys are disappointed, especially since it's the opening game of the season. We haven't lost an opener before. At the end of the day, as I said before this game, there's going to be 33 games left after this one and there's still a lot of points out there. So we gotta lick our wounds, go forward, and take care of points as we go. If we had played absolutely horrible, if we hadn't created any chances and if they had dominated us from A through Z, then you'd see me banging my head against the wall. But that isn't the case and I think we'll be able to move forward."

Steve Zakuani - Sounders FC Midfielder

(On the play of O'Brian White) "I thought he did well. He's been with the team for two or three months now, I thought he did well. Obviously I think he'll be the first to say that he had some good chances (on goal), but that happens. I think he did well. He gave us an outlet. He was moving. He kept the ball. He stayed strong up there, and he was on the pitch for a very long time. As long as he was out there he was always a threat. He's someone we haven't played with before - that's the first game he's played ever, so we're going to have to get used to him and he's going to have to get used to us. A couple times we maybe misread each other, but that's normal. We were happy. It's a step in the right direction. As he stays with us he'll get better."

(On White's activity on the pitch) "Yeah, that's what he gives us. He's moving around. You get that first goal and then you keep going - and that's all of us though, I need to score, Fredy (Montero) needs to score, OB (O'Brian White) needs to score...whoever. It's not just going to fall on him, but on all of us as a team, as a collective. Tonight we drew a blank, but New York is obviously a good pickup game to bounce back on. It's still a long season. I think the game for itself wasn't the best game, especially in the first half, but in the second half we definitely felt like we had a fair chance."

Kasey Keller - Sounders FC Goalkeeper

(On the loss) "We got beat on a great goal, but at the same time we had lots of chances to get in this game. On the run of play and the chances I think a draw might have been a much better result out of this. Landon (Donovan) had a great chance that he hit the crossbar on. We had some very good chances. That's probably the most frustrating thing is that we really feel that we should have got something out of this game today."

(On the team's effort and recent results against L.A.) "You're going to have days like that. You seem to have teams that just have your number, where it just didn't matter. You huff and puff and you just can't seem to get it against them. One of those clubs that just have your number. Then there's other teams where you beat them every time you play, and why do you have their number? Who knows? It just seems like at the moment L.A. has ours a little bit, regardless of how poorly we play or how well we play."

Fredy Montero - Sounders FC Forward

(On the play of Galaxy goalkeeper Josh Saunders) "He had a good night, a little bit of luck as well."

Notes:

  • With the win, the Galaxy are now 1-0-0 on the season, giving them three points and putting them in first place in the Western Conference.
  • Tonight’s game was the first game of the 2011 MLS season. It was also the earliest game ever played by the Galaxy. Prior to tonight’s game, the earliest the Galaxy had ever opened a season was on March 18, which happened in the 2000 season with a 2-1 win over the Colorado Rapids at the Rose Bowl.
  • The Galaxy are now 8-5-3 all-time in their first game of the season.
  • This was the third time in the last five years that the Galaxy had opened their season on the road and the fifth time in club history.
  • The Galaxy are 1-2-2 in season openers played on the road and 6-5-5 in their first road game of the season all-time.
  • Under Bruce Arena, LA are 2-0-1 in season openers and 2-0-1 in their first road game of the year.
  • This was the Galaxy’s second consecutive 1-0 win to open a season after defeating New England 1-0 at The Home Depot Center on March 27, 2010.
  • The Galaxy were without Juan Pablo Angel, Gregg Berhalter, Adam Cristman, Omar Gonzalez, Dan Keat and Donovan Ricketts, who all missed the game through illness or injury.
  • With Ricketts injured, Josh Saunders made his second start in a Galaxy season opener in the last three years. He was also in goal for the 2-2 draw with D.C. United on March 22, 2009 to open that season.
  • By keeping the Sounders without a goal, Saunders ran his streak of consecutive minutes in MLS without allowing a goal to 426. The last time that Saunders allowed a goal in the regular season was on April 4, 2009 in a 3-2 home loss to Colorado. Since that game, Saunders has started four regular season games and come off the bench in two others without surrendering a goal. He also played 54 minutes of MLS Cup 2009 without allowing a goal, meaning that his shutout streak in all MLS competitions is now 480 minutes.
  • Saunders made five saves in the first half and six in the game to set a new career-high. Prior to tonight, Saunders had never made more than four saves in a game.
  • Chad Barrett made his Galaxy debut in the game, starting up front and playing 79 minutes before being replaced by Jovan Kirovski.
  • Paolo Cardozo, Frankie Hejduk, Miguel Lopez and Brian Perk were all on the bench for the Galaxy, looking to make their debut for the club, but none of the four entered the game.
  • Chris Birchall was booked in the 24th minute for the first yellow card of the season. The Galaxy were not booked in the season opener in 2010.
  • Juninho scored the first goal of the season in the 58th minute, beating Kasey Keller from 25 yards out. Juninho’s first MLS goal of 2010 was also against the Sounders and from outside the box.
  • Todd Dunivant was credited with the assist on Juninho’s goal for his first assist of the season. He had one assist all of 2010.
  • The player who scored the Galaxy’s first goal in both the 2009 and 2010 seasons went on to finish the season as the team leader in goals.
  • After making all three of his available substitutions in all 30 of the Galaxy’s regular season games last year, Bruce Arena made just two changes in tonight’s game, bringing Michael Stephens on in the 76th minute for Mike Magee and Jovan Kirovski on for Chad Barrett three minutes later.
  • The Galaxy are now 2-0-1 against Seattle in the regular season at Qwest Field. Since the start of the 2010 season, the Galaxy have played the Sounders five times in MLS competitions, winning all five and outscoring them 11-2.
  • The attendance for today’s game was a sellout crowd of 36,433 at Qwest Field. This was the Sounders’ highest-ever attendance for a home game.
  • The Galaxy are back in action on Sunday evening when they host the New England Revolution in their home opener at The Home Depot Center. The game, which is presented by Pechanga Resorts and Casino, kicks off at 5 p.m. and can be seen live in Spanish on Galavision. FOX Sports West will also air the game and a special postgame edition of Galaxy Live on tape delay starting at 8 p.m. BUY NOW